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The Notebook: Spring Football 2019 #8

One more practice then spring game!

NCAA Football: California at Southern California Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

No frills. Just notes. Let’s go.

  • It was easily the best day that the offense has had all spring. Making a plethora of plays and finishing through some light contact. I was very impressed with the execution and particularly that of run blocking and route running.
  • Monroe Young is getting better every single day. His route running was already one of the best in the unit but his body balance and fighting for every catch is starting to pay off for him.
  • Trey Turner III had the lone pick of the day. A few opportunities for others to make some interceptions but they came off the hands or were tipped in another direction.
  • MVP of the Practice was Chase Garbers. He didn’t get the opportunity to rip it downfield, but he was very confident in making his reads and taking what the defense gave him.
  • The most important part of Garbers’ day was his ability to change his throwing angles to sling the ball past rushers. I was very impressed with his composure in the face of pressure to make side-arm and slightly-bent-arm throws to get the ball to his receivers or check downs.
  • Garbers’ movement in the pocket and sliding past pressure seems to be a staple for him now. He’s comfortable feeling pressure and doesn’t seem to be jittery when he feels the pressure close in on him. Too many times last season did we see him take off with the slightest amount of pressure. It looks like he’s learned from that and looking to make more plays with his arm than his legs.
  • Christopher Brown, Jr. continues to emerge as the best all-around back in the room. The kid weighs in at just above 220 and is making all of the agile moves in the gaps and showing some solid explosion once he reaches the second level.
  • Brown also had a moment where he trucked Elijah Hicks unintentionally on a swing pass. Elijah got back up and nodded back at Brown in respect and approval of the move.
  • Jack Newman is exactly what Beau Baldwin said he was last week—he’s a playmaker. Newman is very good in scramble situations and making throws while extending plays. His biggest learning task is to get better at making the read on option plays. He’s given up the ball to the RB at times where he should have pulled and ran himself.
  • TE blocking was a plus in today’s practice. Gavin Reinwald and McCallan Castles were both very good in pass-blocking and being the lead blocker on some run plays. Exciting to see them grow in that regard because that could set up plays for them to leak out on chip blocks for some good chunk pass plays.
  • Marcel Dancy continues his strides as the shiftiest back in the backfield. The drills of one cut–and–explosion are perfect for his skill set and he’s taking full advantage of practice into real-game situations. Fully expect Dancy to hold down the #2 spot in the room regardless of who takes the starting role.
  • Last tidbit on QBs and specifically Chase Garbers. Chase and his play today reminded me of how I felt about Bowers last fall: excitement of seeing him grow from the season before, better command of the offense, and just a sense of maturation at the position. He’s playing with confidence and making some throws/reads that we just did not see him make last season that made us frustrated.

As usual. Any questions or players you want to talk about. Let me know in the comments below!